10 Scientifically Proven Ways To Become A Happier Person
January 2, 2014 Kristance Harlow
It’s the holiday season and the new year is upon us. The holidays are not always an easy time of year—many of us are missing loved ones, while others are struggling with mental illness that stand in the way of feeling happy. This year, let’s explore 10 proven ways that we can all become happier and less stressed people. Now that’s a New Year’s resolution worth trying.
10. Give It A Shot
Anyone who has suffered from bouts of sadness knows what it is like to be told to just try harder. This can be frustrating advice, especially if it comes from someone who doesn’t understand what you’re going through. It is never good to tell someone to “get over it” when they can’t shake the blues. Whether that person is suffering from clinical depression or mourning the loss of a beloved family pet, there are countless reasons why it can be difficult to get over feeling down. Belittling someone’s emotions is not going to help anyone feel any better. While getting over it may not be an option, focusing on your own feelings and just trying to feel happier can actually elevate your mood.
According to two researchers from Knox College and the University of Missouri, just trying to be happier can improve your sense of well-being. In the first of two studies, volunteers were instructed to listen to uplifting music. One group of volunteers was told to try to feel happy while listening to the music and the other group was told to just listen to the music. The group that actively attempted to feel happier felt significantly more positive than the other group after the experiment.
In the second study, which lasted over two weeks, one group was just told to listen to and focus on happy music while a second group was told to listen to happy music but to focus on improving their mood. The participants who were told to focus on their own happiness reported the highest feelings of positivity after the experiment ended. The researchers concluded that concentrating on being happy led to happy results.
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